23/03/2020Factsheets

What happens to my superannuation when I move overseas?

If you’ve worked in Australia, there’s a high chance that you have a superannuation account, even if you’ve only worked in Australia as a temporary resident.

On this page:

  • What happens to my superannuation when I move overseas?
  • I’m an Australian citizen leaving Australia permanently.
  • Can I access my super early to leave and go overseas?
  • Any exceptions to the rule above?
  • Can I contribute funds into my superannuation account while I’m overseas?
  • Can temporary residents leaving Australia access their superannuation?

If you’ve worked in Australia, there’s a high chance that you have a superannuation account, even if you’ve only worked in Australia as a temporary resident. The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) advises that the laws surrounding what you can and cannot do with your superannuation will depend on your status as a resident or citizen. If you’re deciding to move overseas permanently or indefinitely, you should seek professional advice from a superannuation specialist.



I’m an Australian citizen leaving Australia permanently.

Your super will be subject to the same rules as if you were living here in Australia.
If you’re an Australian citizen or permanent resident who is moving overseas permanently or for an indefinite duration of time, you will not be able to gain access to the funds because of your departure. Your superannuation will remain locked in your account until you reach preservation age or if you’re eligible under other reasons that allow a release of your funds before you’ve reached your preservation age. Speak to your superannuation specialist to learn more about what these exceptions are.


Can I access my super early to leave and go overseas?

No, you cannot.
Whilst you won’t be able to access your super early to leave and go overseas, your Superannuation will continue to be invested in your physical absence. You will be able to access your nest egg when you retire or need to access it under special conditions.


Any exceptions to the rule above?

Yes, there is one exception – the Trans-Tasman Portability Scheme.
The Trans-Tasman Portability Scheme will allow you to transfer your superannuation into a KiwiSaver account. If you are an Australian citizen claiming payments in New Zealand or intend to move to New Zealand, you can opt for the Trans-Tasman Portability Scheme which allows you to transfer your superannuation into a KiwiSaver account. The similar rules about accessing the fund when you retire, however, will still apply. This transfer is only possible when switching from an Australian Prudential Regulation Authority regulated fund, and no others, including self-managed funds.

Can I contribute funds into my superannuation account while I’m overseas?

Yes, except for self-managed super funds (SMSFs).
Apart from self-managed superannuation funds, other types of Australian Superannuation funds are likely to still allow for personal contributions whilst overseas. FairVine Super allows this through its personal contribution feature – TopUps.

Can temporary residents leaving Australia access their superannuation?

Yes, through a Departing Australia superannuation Payment.
If you are a temporary resident, you could be eligible to have your superannuation paid to you on your way home. This is made possible through a ‘Departing Australia Superannuation Payment’. To apply, visit the ATO website.

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Disclaimer

All information provided in the magazine is sourced from independent writers & may contain general advice that is not endorsed by the FairVine Super Plan.